The second-generation antipsychotic quetiapine is commonly used off-label for its anxiolytic and hypnotic properties. However, quetiapine is associated with problematic side-effects. We used Danish Medicinal Product Statistics and a 20% random sample of the Danish population's prescription fills (2001-2020) to describe the utilization of quetiapine and proportion of various prescriber types (general practitioner [GP], specialist in private practice, hospital physician and other prescribers) both in connection to first-time and subsequent prescriptions. In 2020, 92% of all quetiapine was dispensed outside hospitals and the average daily dispensed quantity of quetiapine per user corresponded to 100 mg/user/d. A GP issued 53% of first-time prescriptions and 75% of subsequent prescriptions for quetiapine in 2020. The proportion of quetiapine prescriptions issued by GPs varied by age group-from 14% among 0-17-year-olds to 93% among the ≥80-year-olds. Future initiatives on the rational use of quetiapine and related drugs, especially among adults, should target GPs.
Keywords: antipsychotics; off-label; prescriber; quetiapine.
© 2022 The Authors. British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of British Pharmacological Society.